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President Obama To Deliver Job Speech To Congress, Nation

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DETROIT (WWJ) - President Barack Obama is expected to propose $300 billion in tax cuts and federal spending when he unveils his jobs agenda in a nationally televised address Thursday night.

University of Maryland Economist Peter Morici said he doesn’t expect to hear anything that will impress him, but he’s interested to find out if the president will address China’s unfair trade policies.

“I’d like to hear the president say he’s finally going to do something about the huge trade deficit. That’s whats pulling down the economy and that’s caused by a lack of domestic energy production and the trade with China,” Morici said.

While President Obama was in Detroit for a Labor Day speech, he gave a partial preview of the speech he’s delivering to Congress. He said he wants Republicans to prove they’ll fight as hard to cut taxes for the middle class as they do for profitable oil companies and the wealthiest Americans. He also said he wants pending trade deals passed to open new markets for U.S. goods.

Morici said the trade issues with China are putting a damper on the auto industry here in America.

“It won’t let General Motors benefit from the other incentives in the Chinese economy for production of the Volt without transferring Volt technology to China. We heard the president talk in Michigan this week, but we didn’t hear him talk much about China trying to steal Detroit’s advanced technology,” he said.

The president is expected to propose a one-year extension of a payroll tax cut for workers and an extension of expiring jobless benefits.

The plan is also expected to include a big jump in spending on infrastructure.

Does this mean new jobs in Michigan?

“We’re certanily hopeful that it will be able at least sustain the people that are working,” said Mike Nystrom from the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association.

“We’re seeing potentnial dropoffs in the revenues that we put towards our roads and bridges here at the state level. They’re talking about cuts in Washington and those type of forcasts certainly cause us even more concern,” he said.

Stay tuned to WWJ and CBSDetroit.com begining at 7 p.m. Thursday to hear the president address the nation. 

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